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    October 14, 2008

    Hate and Fear

    Posted by: Andoni

    Wanted_for_treasonOK, I'm going to play the age card now. Because I am older than most of the people who read this blog, I remember the 1960's and the indelible feelings associated with that era.

    Just as the memory of a smell lasts forever, a particular emotional feeling does too.

    Over the weekend Congressman John Lewis said  that presidential candidate John McCain was sowing the seeds of hatred and division just as Governor George Wallace had done during his political career and when he ran for president.

    I can't confirm that because I'm not a black man who was on the receiving end of those assaults. I have no idea what it felt like to be John Lewis at the time, but I believe him.

    As a white man, however, the current climate feels to me the same as it did in 1960 when the issue was religion, not race.

    I was brought up Greek Orthodox, which for all practical purposes is just like Roman Catholic, except for the fact that the two churches had a huge fight a thousand years ago (The Great Schism) and excommunicated each other and didn't speak until very recently. As a result, in this country, the Greek Orthodox Church ended up joining with the Protestant churches in the World Council of Churches and ignored the The Roman Catholic Church.

    For this reason I ended up joining a Protestant Boy Scout Troop when I was young, although I thought of myself as much more Catholic than Protestant. All was well until Kennedy ran for president in 1960. Because they thought I was one of them, they spoke freely about their feelings toward Kennedy, and Catholics. It was like being a closeted gay guy in a gang of bigots (which was also the case, but that part was still being suppressed by me).

    The hate for Kennedy based on his religion was unbelievable. The words, nonsensical statements about patriotism, loyalty, and associations were very much the same that you see Sarah Palin and John McCain using today. The climate was poisonous, the hate palpable, and the fear irrational.

    It is the exact same feeling for me today when I see what is happening as it was back then. Take the woman at a McCain rally last week who seemed to be shaking and said she was afraid because she read that Obama was an Arab. I knew many people in 1960 who were so frightened at the thought of a Roman Catholic becoming president that they literally shook from fear. They thought the Pope would take over America. Fear had taken over their being.

    The difference between now and 1960 is that in 1960 it was not Richard Nixon or VP candidate Henry Cabot Lodge who whipped up these fears. In 2008 it is the candidates themselves and their campaigns who are inciting this hatred and fear that result in cries of "traitor," "terrorist," "treason," "liar," and "off with his head." I heard this same stuff from angry, scared folks from 1960 to 1963.

    It is illegal in this country to shout fire in a crowded theater. It is not illegal however for a preacher to incite someone in his congregation to go out and beat up or kill a gay man. It is not illegal for a political leader to use words the end up causing riots or even violence toward a group or a particular person. However, when a candidate does this, it is not leadership. It's demagoguery. And certainly it is not presidential.

    I'm glad McCain is walking his recent approach back a bit, but as far as I'm concerned the damage is already done and impossible to undo.

    In case you're wondering about the photo at the top of this post, it a pamphlet that was distributed in Dallas the day before President John F. Kennedy was assassinated there in 1963. It's definitely worth a read. It acuses JFK of lying, being un-Christian, as well as unpatriotic.

    Every cell in my body shouts out that the shit we are seeing from the McCain campaign and the far right today feels exactly the same as it did in 1960. That is when another long standing American political barrier was broken by electing the first Roman Catholic president. The forces that control the status quo do not go quietly or peacefully. They fight change with every tool they have, including hate, fear, and division. This is not new. We just have to make sure that it does not work.



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    1. otterpop on Oct 14, 2008 12:50:13 PM:

      One difference - Kennedy actually WAS a Roman Catholic (not that there's anything wrong with that), while Obama is NOT a crypto Muslim, an Arab, or a domestic terrorist. Back then they were telling lies based on a truth. Now they are just making shit up.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 14, 2008 2:35:55 PM:

      Andoni, as usual, the rhetoric is quite hilarious, given the philosophies that Barack Obama not only fully supports and endorses, but gave millions of dollars to have taught in public schools.

      Carruthers admits that Africans living in America have already been shaped by Western culture, yet compares this Americanization process to rape: “We may not be able to get our virginity back after the rape, but we do not have to marry the rapist....” In other words, American blacks (i.e. Africans) may have been forcibly exposed to American culture, but that doesn’t mean they need to accept it. The better option, says Carruthers, is to separate out and relearn the wisdom of Africa’s original Kemetic culture, embodied in the teachings of the ancient wise man, Ptahhotep (an historical figure traditionally identified as the author of a Fifth Dynasty wisdom book). Anything less than re-Africanization threatens the mental, and even physical, genocide of Africans living in an ineradicably white supremacist United States.

      Carruthers is a defender of Leonard Jeffries, professor in the department of black studies at City College in Harlem, infamous for his black supremacist and anti-Semitic views. Jeffries sees whites as oppressive and violent “ice people,” in contrast to peaceful and mutually supportive black “sun people.” The divergence says Jeffries, is attributable to differing levels of melanin in the skin. Jeffries also blames Jews for financing the slave trade. Carruthers defends Jeffries and excoriates the prestigious black academics Carruthers views as traitorous for denouncing their African brother, Jeffries. Carruthers’s vision of the superior and peaceful Kemetic philosophy of Ptahhotep triumphing over Greco-Euro-American-white culture obviously parallels Jeffries’ opposition between ice people and sun people.

      One can only imagine the outcry if a Republican candidate were found to be channeling millions of dollars to people following the educational philosophies that black people are inherently evil because of the pigment of their skin. Indeed, given the fits gay liberals throw over supposedly "unscientific" theories being taught in schools, it is amazing that they clap and cheer for candidates who support teaching historical theories that view established archaeology, anthropology, and history as being nothing more than conspiracies by white people.

    1. mike/ on Oct 14, 2008 9:57:47 PM:

      wow. the post brought back a lot of memories. i, too, am probably older than most readers just as you. the use of fear is so powerful and so illogical, not to mention usually not the entire truth. as is some of the comment from North Dallas Thirty.

      i had to click the link "gave millions of dollars to have taught in public schools" to see at what he was referring. was i surprised where the link went? not really - NROonline. what surprised me is the information in the link, some of which is quoted in the comment. maybe i should say "mis-information" and more hatred and scare tactics behind it.

      in the NRO article it specifically mentions organizations with which i have personal experience - the Annenberg Foundation and CIESS. i worked for the Chicago Public Schools until i retired last year and had direct contact with both.

      my first comment would have to be about the Annenberg Foundation. Walter Annenberg was a conservative Republican and a close personal friend of Ronald Reagan. he set up a foundation to work directly with under-served students in inner city schools. the amount of support his foundation gave and the good that it did far outweighs anything negative that people think.

      because i worked mostly at the school level with the Foundation, i have to tell you i didn't even know that Barack Obama and Bill Ayers were involved with it. i only knew the great opportunities we were able to give students because of the Foundation, which is exactly what the Foundation was set up to do. as far as Bill Ayers, he is known as one of the foremost experts in inner city school reform. that's the way i've always known him, though i was part of the "counter-culture" and anti-Vietnam war movement and never made the connection to his past.

      then there is CIESS. i worked directly with them on a number of different projects. one of them was the Afro-centric curriculum. i cannot tell you how much i learned from looking at the history of Africa and the influences its many cultures have on the world. something of which many people would rather not be aware. there were problems with the program that most schools chose, but everyone made the corrections as we went along. this type of program had never been done before.

      it was NOT the most major project with which they worked. the biggest job they did was, and still remains to be, bringing quality education and learning experiences to students who are at-risk.

      as an example, one year they asked me to do a presentation to all of the schools in the South Shore neighborhood on standards-based instruction - BEFORE anyone ever heard of NCLB! there were over 500 teachers, principals, administrators and educators in the audience. CIESS brought to the community something with which most suburban schools took years to get on board, and some still aren't.

      another time CIESS asked me to do a presentation to parents on working with students at home. i gave them very practical things to do to help ease frustration and support their children and theIR schools. things like, set a time and a space aside for homework; talk to your children about school but don't ask them "what did you do in school today?' ask them things like, "What was something you learned today that you didn't know before? and, very important, how to be active listeners with their children.

      these are just two things that the organization has done. ones with which i participated. there are many, many others.

      picking and choosing things that will support your claims is an old political tactic. it is incomplete information and usually focuses only on the negative. it's been used for millennia to deride and detract from the truth.

      just ask Socrates...

    1. gkruz on Oct 15, 2008 12:58:41 AM:

      I have often read that there was a climate of hatred towards Kennedy in Dallas. The wanted poster you show here is usually presented as evidence of that, and indeed it was placed in a newspaper the day before Kennedy's visit by a group which I believe had ties to the Hunt brothers, who were Texas oil millionaires well know for their extreme right views.
      But as a Marxist, and a former defector to the Soviet Union, Lee Harvey Oswald was unlikely to have been swayed by right-wing hatred of Kennedy to assassinate him, unless you want to posit one of the numerous conspiracy theories that insist Oswald was a patsy of a CIA asset posing as a leftist.

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 1:54:45 AM:

      Why WD40, I thought you were dead!

      How nice of you to rouse yourself from the slough of despair to fling one last pitiful handful of Afrophobic poo before the landslide brings you down.

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 2:41:42 AM:

      Here's some factual information Challenge from Education Week.

      You'll have to sign up for a free trial membership to Edweek to read the full article, so here's a few highlights:

      The Chicago Annenberg Challenge, chaired from 1995 to 1999 by Barack Obama, is being portrayed by John McCain’s campaign as an attempt to push radicalism on schools.

      The project undertaken in Chicago as part of a high-profile national initiative reflected, however, mainstream thinking among education reformers. The Annenberg Foundation’s $49.2 million grant in the city focused on three priorities: encouraging collaboration among teachers and better professional development; reducing the isolation between schools and between schools and their communities; and reducing school size to improve learning.


      “They are taking what was a very positive civic undertaking to improve public schools and characterizing it as something it was not at all,” Ms. Hallett said of the bloggers, commentators, and TV and radio hosts who for months have been discussing Sen. Obama’s association with Mr. Ayers.

      Critics have focused not just on Mr. Ayers’ involvement in violent opposition to the Vietnam War, but also on what they see as his espousal of a radical “social justice” approach to education.


      The proposal was backed by letters of support to the Annenberg Foundation from Illinois Gov. Jim Edgar, a Republican, local education school deans, the superintendent of the Chicago public schools, and the heads of local foundations.


      All three former foundation executives said this month that their decision to recommend Mr. Obama was not influenced by Mr. Ayers or Ms. Hallett.

      “I can speak to the fact that Bill Ayers had nothing to do with the appointment of Obama to the Annenberg Challenge, and he was not significantly involved with the challenge after Obama was appointed,” Ms. Graham said.

      The board of the CAC approved Mr. Obama as chairman at its first meeting, in March 1995, on the recommendation of Ms. Graham.

      The other members of the board were Arnold R. Weber, a former president of Northwestern University who was then president of the civic committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago; Stanley Ikenberry, a former president of the University of Illinois system; Ray Romero, a vice president of Ameritech; Susan Crown, a philanthropist; Handy Lindsey, the president of the Field Foundation of Illinois; and Wanda White, the executive director of the Community Workshop for Economic Development. Mr. Ayers and Ms. Hallett were ex officio members.

      Mr. Obama’s role as chairman of the board included working with lawyers to set up the group as a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization and appealing to donors for matching funds.

      Mr. Obama was active, challenging the staff and pushing the researchers on the project to do more, said Ken Rolling, who was the executive director of the Chicago Annenberg Challenge and a former associate director of the Woods Fund.

      “Barack was all the best people already see in him,” Mr. Rolling said. “He’s very smart, a quick study, and somebody who listens to a range of opinions and takes in data, information, and viewpoints, and helps work toward a decision that is often much more broad than the initial recommendation.”

      Over its six years, the Chicago Annenberg Challenge funded projects in more than 210 schools, mostly elementary. The schools were required to work with “external partners,” including higher education institutions, museums, community groups and already-established school reform initiatives.

      Pretty scary stuff, huh? The Annenbergs (Mrs. Annenberg is a McCain supporter), two of the wealthiest Chicago families (the Crowns and the Fields), business executives and other Chicago leaders. All associated with William Ayers.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 15, 2008 2:50:17 AM:

      Allan, it does not surprise me that you consider denunciation of black racists pushing pseudoscience to be "Afrophobic poo".

      And Mike, I applaud your attempt to spin theories that say white people are naturally evil because of the lack of melanin in their skin as something that you think is appropriate to be taught in a public school classroom.

      It fits very nicely with your support of this.

      Like other leaders of the rites of passage movement, Carruthers teaches that the true birthplace of world civilization was ancient “Kemet” (Egypt), from which Kemetic philosophy supposedly spread to Africa as a whole. Carruthers and his colleagues believe that the values of Kemetic civilization are far superior to the isolating and oppressive, ancient Greek-based values of European and American civilization. Although academic Egyptologists and anthropologists strongly reject these historical claims, Carruthers dismisses critics as part of a white supremacist conspiracy to hide the truth of African superiority.

      As far as Annenberg is concerned, I rather doubt he gave money for people like yourself to incalculate young urban students with racist pseudoscientific beliefs; that's simply a matter of people like Ayers and Obama being willing to pervert such money for such purposes.

      And as far as Ayers's expertise goes, the dismal state of Chicago public schools, despite the hundreds of millions of dollars that Obama gave him to support his preaching of racist pseudoscience, is testimony enough to his effectiveness as an education professor. Quite frankly, he is better at firebombing children at home asleep than he is at teaching them.

    1. mike/ on Oct 15, 2008 11:52:21 AM:

      NDT -

      i wasn't "spinning" any such theory of white supremacy. i was stating an observation from the point of actually being there, not only as a teacher, but as a student of the Social Sciences, my basic educational background. and as a curriculum developer with many years of experience in reviewing and working with Social Science programs. back in the 70's - 90's there was much lacking in what is included in programs and books and not just on African-American studies. women and LGBTQ studies are only two others that fit into this concern. not to mention the biases the textbook companies have placed on them by having to write textbooks to sell to two specific states - California and Texas - that use state adoption of texts and include very specific requirements. schools in those two places can only used "approved" texts. talk about two states that couldn't be more polar opposites?

      Allan - Thank you very much for the information about the Annenberg Foundation. it was a great boon to Chicago schools. as i said, i have a lot of experience working with the group, and what i saw it doing was incredibly ahead of its time and, though some will argue with me, i also witnessed first hand the success it made possible in the Chicago Public Schools.

      oh, NDT, maybe i should let you know one thing that you may not have picked up - i'm caucasian...

      and maybe to make things worse for some, i was raised as a Roman Catholic. i grew up as part of the "publics" and "them".

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 12:03:55 PM:

      Here's Matt Yglesias at ThinkProgress on the right-wing lunatic fringe creature's Kurtz desperate attempts to smear Obama:

      Specifically, the Chicago Annenberg Challenge on whose board Obama served gave a grant to an outfit called the Coalition for Improved Education in [Chicago’s] South Shore (CIESS). CIESS was “linked to a network of schools within the Chicago public system” called the “South Shore African Village Collaborative.” According to Kurtz, this network which was linked to an organization which got a grant from a group on whose board Obama served, “was very much a part of the Afrocentric ‘rites of passage movement’” and also at time did events featuring guys named Jacob Carruthers and Asa Hilliard. These two, in turn, seem to have held fringy opinions somewhat similar to some of Jeremiah Wright’s fringy opinions. Ergo, according to Kurtz, Wright is back on the table.

      I’d say McCain’s in luck with this one! Obama’s doomed!

      Seriously, though, is there anyone who could withstand this kind of guilt-by-association. Obama was on the board of an outfit that gave a grant to an outfit that was linked to another outfit that organized an event where some dude spoke, and thus Obama is responsible for the dude? Really? I spoke at the Heritage Foundation once. Does that make Heritage’s board members responsible for stuff on my blog? It doesn’t make any sense.

      Guilt by association doesn't have to make sense if you're an enemy of equality like Kurtz and his fan WD40. It just has to sound scary and appeal to racism.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 15, 2008 1:08:53 PM:

      Try again, fellows.

      We know that SSAVC was part of this movement, not only because their Annenberg proposals were filled with Afrocentric themes and references to “rites of passage,” but also because SSAVC’s faculty set up its African-centered curriculum in consultation with some of the most prominent leaders of the “rites of passage movement.” For example, a CIESS teacher conference sponsored a presentation on African-centered curricula by Jacob Carruthers, a particularly controversial Afrocentrist.

      Again, CIESS received grant money directly from Obama, as did SSAVC.

      Now, let's put this into perspective: say McCain, as head of an organization, reviewed and granted money to an organization that sponsored a presentation on white-centered curricula by David Duke, a particularly controversial white supremacist.

      In this case, Obama reviewed and granted money to an organization that sponsored a presentation on African-centered curricula by a man who believes that white people are evil "ice people", black people are good "sun people", and that the difference in the amount of melanin in their skin causes this stark behavioral differentiation.

      The difference here is that racism based on pseudoscientific theories is acceptable to black liberals like Obama and to white liberals like yourself when it is espoused by black people.

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 1:31:00 PM:

      WD40, good luck with your crusade to stamp out anti-white racism in the African-American community, clearly the biggest problem facing the US today. The powerful African-Americans who control our economy and the political leadership of the US must be stopped from continuing to oppress the downtrodden Caucasian.

      Your psychiatrist has probably pointed out to you that this is known as "projection."

      Why do you look at the speck that is in your brother's eye, but do not notice the log that is in your own eye?

      Matthew 7:3

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 1:40:16 PM:

      You claim these organizations received money directly from Obama. Are you saying he wrote checks from his personal bank account to them?

      Or are you saying that the board of the CAC, headed by Obama, approved grant applications presented by these organizations?

      Because you're saying that these organizations received money directly from the Annenbergs, lifelong Republicans and former ambassadors, and Mrs. Annenberg, a McCain donor and supporter.

      Therefore, McCain is associated with this Afrocentric conspiracy as well. McCain even spoke to a conference sponsored by ACORN in 2006 and lauded the groups who attended!

      This McCain is some kind of angry black nationalist and a sponsor of anti-white racism. Clearly he must be disqualified from consideration for the Presidency. I await your condemnation of him, WD40.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 15, 2008 1:55:51 PM:

      Or are you saying that the board of the CAC, headed by Obama, approved grant applications presented by these organizations?

      That is correct, as I made clear in my previous example.

      Now, let's put this into perspective: say McCain, as head of an organization, reviewed and granted money to an organization that sponsored a presentation on white-centered curricula by David Duke, a particularly controversial white supremacist.

      The Annenbergs are guilty of naivete in this case. They trusted a con man who happens to be a supporter of black racist beliefs; what is truly disgusting is that, instead of disavowing these racist beliefs, you attempt to use the fact that the Annenbergs gave money to a worthy cause -- improvement of urban schools -- as a shield to protect the leader of the Annenberg Challenge, Barack Obama, who took that money and gave it to organizations that promoted and pushed black racism.

      The fact that Barack Obama supports black racism has been nicely established. The problem is that white liberals like yourself who endorse Obama do not want to admit that black racism is wrong, just as you do not want to admit that falsifying voter registrations is wrong.

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 2:16:14 PM:

      WD40, have you asked Mrs. Annenberg her opinions of the performance of the CAC and the funding choices it made, or are you making assumptions about her?

      It doesn't frighten me, as it appears to frighten you, that educators want to enlighten school-children about the history and cultures of Africa. I know my own public school education was shockingly empty of any insight into the peoples of that continent, as it was of Asia. As a white American of German/British ancestry, I never felt any insecurities about my own worthiness to grow into a position of influence in American society.

      I suggest you read Tim Wise's book White Like Me, and visit his website to learn more about how your mind has been poisoned by racism and how you continue to benefit from white privilege.

      Seriously, that log in your eye is blinding you.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 15, 2008 2:38:01 PM:

      It doesn't frighten me, as it appears to frighten you, that educators want to enlighten school-children about the history and cultures of Africa.

      As someone who studied that in elementary school, high school, and college, it doesn't frighten me in the least, and I in fact support such things.

      However, what you call "enlightening school children", which includes insisting that all established academic, archaeological, and anthropological data that contradicts what Barack Obama's endorsees say is the result of a "white supremacist conspiracy", insisting that other black people who don't support you are race traitors, and telling children that skin pigmentation amounts rule behavior, should not be confused with teaching children about the history and cultures of Africa. Instead, you should call it what it is, which is rationalization for racism no different than the rantings of the Klan about "Aryans".

      Again, the fact that Barack Obama supports black racism has been nicely established. The problem is that white liberals like yourself who endorse Obama do not want to admit that black racism is wrong, just as you do not want to admit that falsifying voter registrations is wrong. It all has to do with deliberately blinding yourself to the obvious and making your decisions on a person's truthfulness based on their skin color.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 15, 2008 2:41:08 PM:

      Oh, and finally, here are some of the interesting conclusions of the actual Annenberg Challenge report.

      The CAC did not improve the schools, and in some ways made things worse. The executive summary also notes: "Classroom behavior, students' sense of self-efficacy, and social competence were weaker in 2001 than before the Challenge."

      The report stated: "In 2001, students in Annenberg schools were somewhat less inclined than in 1994 to respect each other, work well together and help each other learn." Neither student attitudes nor student achievements were aided by Obama's efforts.

      The last is hardly a surprise; when one is teaching hate of others based on the amount of pigment in their skin, it does tend to do nasty things to respect and cooperation.

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 3:00:15 PM:

      Here's more from the Edweek article I cited above. It seems that during the time the CAC-funded organizations were carrying out their work, there were mitigating factors that make assessing credit/blame for results more complicated than the virulently anti-Obama biased Investor's Business Daily editoral (not reporting) you cite.

      While the Chicago Annenberg Challenge was designed to strengthen the decentralization of the city’s schools by better connecting them to their communities, another major change in the governance of the school system served to complicate its effects.

      In 1995, just as the CAC was beginning its work, the Illinois legislature gave control of the school system to Mayor Richard M. Daley. He appointed his former budget director, Paul G. Vallas, to run the schools, ushering in a new era characterized by a top-down emphasis on accountability.

      Competing Agendas
      Individual schools were faced with the tension of pursuing Annenberg-funded projects while at the same time adhering to new mandates from the central office for raising students’ test scores.

      The CAC made a grant to support a leadership-training program for members of the local councils.

      “For school reform, the ’90s were like the ’60s,” Mr. Vallas, now the chief of the state-run Recovery School District in New Orleans, said in a recent interview. “There was a lot of experimentation going on. I thought there could be a balance between centralized accountability and local control.”

      Mr. Rolling said schools often felt Mr. Vallas’ directives didn’t leave time or room for other projects.

      “They were focused on accountability and scripted curriculum. They were carrying a pretty big stick,” he recalled of the new administration. “We were saying to schools: ‘Figure out what is best going to work there. Tell us your best ideas and how you would implement it, and we will get you some funding to carry it out.’”

      In the end, a 2003 study conducted by the Consortium on Chicago School Research concluded that the Annenberg project “did not achieve an overall effect on student outcomes.”

      “[W]hile the challenge contributed to the improvement of a number of Annenberg schools, there is little evidence of an overall Annenberg school improvement ‘effect.’ Any improvements were much like those occuring in demographically similar non-Annenberg schools,” the report said.

      The challenge’s supporters point elsewhere for evidence of success: to the studies produced by the Chicago Annenberg Research Project, and to the creation of the Chicago Public Education Fund, considered by many a successor organization to the Annenberg board.

      The CAC gave staff time and more than $2 million to create the fund. Mr. Obama was among the board members who gave their own money for the startup in 1999; the records at the Daley library do not say how much.

      Mr. Rolling said the research project helped shape the agenda for Arne Duncan, the current chief executive officer of the Chicago schools, especially on improving teacher quality.

      Ms. Graham, the former head of the Spencer Foundation, agreed. She added that she believes the emphasis on improving schooling for poor children also made a contribution.

      “In the early ’90s, when this was all going on, there were not a lot of people who were thinking seriously about what we need to do to improve the schooling of low-income children,” she said.

      The Chicago Public Education Fund has raised $25 million for training school principals and for boosting the number of teachers certified by the National Board for Professional Teaching Standards. The fund recently launched a $25 million campaign to bring in national management groups to help improve Chicago’s schools.

      Warren K. Chapman, who co-chaired the Chicago School Reform Collaborative with Mr. Ayers, credited the Chicago Annenberg Challenge with laying the groundwork for such civic efforts.

      “I don’t know if [the challenge] was successful in improving education in terms of student achievement. I think, at the time, it was successful in galvanizing support for local schools, bringing together people and communities who became engaged in the challenge,” said Mr. Chapman, who is the vice chancellor for external affairs at the University of Illinois at Chicago.

      “Today, you see a lot of people engaged in many schools in Chicago,” he said. “Some go back to the Annenberg Challenge, and some have done it since then.”

    1. Allan on Oct 15, 2008 3:19:45 PM:

      Oh, and one final word to you, dear WD40:

      You can keep spreading the defamatory lie that Obama is or supports this thing you call "black racism" from now until doomsday, or November 4th, as it is also known, and guess what?

      It doesn't work.

      You can run up and down the streets of that awful America-hating gay-loving city of San Francisco screaming, "The Sheriff is a N*****!" and it won't change a single vote.

      No surprise, you say? SF is in the tank for Obama?

      Read this post from Ben Smith at Politico and weep.

      He gets an email from a right-wing consultant who ran a focus group for responses to a tough new anti-Obama ad.

      Reagan Dems and Independents. Call them blue-collar plus. Slightly more Target than Walmart.

      Yes, the spot worked. Yes, they believed the charges against Obama. Yes, they actually think he's too liberal, consorts with bad people and WON'T BE A GOOD PRESIDENT...but they STILL don't give a f***. They said right out, "He won't do anything better than McCain" but they're STILL voting for Obama.

    1. Hawyer on Oct 15, 2008 7:10:23 PM:

      By point of fact, since McCain cannot run on any issues, his only political cover is character assassination - to paint Obama as (among other things) a domestic terrorist. While anyone who cares to inquire knows that Bill Ayers was appointed to the Annenberg Foundation board by ultra-right winger Walter H. Annenberg himself. Obama was recomended to the board by another friend of his then on the board. Obama's and Ayer's association was purely tangential at best.

      "Palling around with terrorists" indeed Sister Sarah. You are the liar.

    1. mike/ on Oct 15, 2008 10:30:51 PM:

      i am going to try to make this my last comment. my friends and colleagues are giving me feedback that i always "preached" to them about 'pissing contests" and i need to listen to my own advice.

      Allan, thanks again for the research you have been presenting. however, it will make little difference. the truth is always the hardest thing to hear for many people.

      i had other comments i was going to make in answer to NDT's. i just deleted all of it. i will heed my own advice. with a caveat - i will not cross streams with him.

      Allan, any time you want to become brothers in the old Native American way of "crossing sreams", it would be my honor. Andoni, and Chris, keep up the great work you are doing...


    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 16, 2008 1:25:27 AM:

      I love how the Obama supporters here do like Obama himself when it comes to criticism -- claim that everything is biased against them and only that which makes excuses for Obama is right. It looks very much like the black racists who Obama gave money in support of who claim that all other academic activity around archaeology and anthropology is the result of a white supremacist conspiracy.

      You can keep spreading the defamatory lie that Obama is or supports this thing you call "black racism" from now until doomsday, or November 4th, as it is also known, and guess what?

      It doesn't work.

      Which is why, Allan, you're so desperately spinning in an attempt to refute it.

      I think the American public will react quite well to Barack Obama's claim that western Pennsylvania is all racist, courtesy of John Murtha, and will react even better to Barack Obama's attempt to hide over two hundred thousand potentially-fradulent registrations by claiming that requiring that voter information actually be verified, as is required by Federal law, is racist -- courtesy of Jennifer Brunner.

      While anyone who cares to inquire knows that Bill Ayers was appointed to the Annenberg Foundation board by ultra-right winger Walter H. Annenberg himself.

      Really? Got a link?

    1. Allan on Oct 16, 2008 1:54:12 AM:

      Desperate? WD40, darling, there you go with that projection thing again. Little old me is cool as a cucumber. Cool as the next President Barack Obama after whipping the cranky old man's you-know-what again tonight.

      And while you're hunched over your computer feverishly seeking out the right-wing nutjob story that's going to bring Obama down, I'll be in Nevada getting Obama supporters to the polls for early voting this weekend. What have you done to win the election for your candidate?

      Mike, I've enjoyed your contributions to this thread immensely. I'm not sure I know what's involved with crossing streams, but it's good to meet you. Thanks for bringing some actual first-hand experience to the table to deflate the toxic one's latest lead balloon.

      I'll close with a comment to the readers of this site: the topic of Andoni's original post is "Hate and Fear." I thank WD40 for providing everyone with a textbook illustration of exactly what that noxious combination looks like. Hate and fear of the black man who is poised to ascend to his rightful place as the next President of the United States, and how it devours and destroys the soul of those who let it into their hearts.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 16, 2008 4:05:14 AM:

      LOL....well, Allan, it's a pity, but I don't think you'll be bringing "Tony Romo" and the others your fellow Obama campaign workers registered to the polls this weekend.

      Meanwhile, "darling", it's rather amusing to watch someone like yourself rant about "hate and fear" while equivocating and making excuses for a belief system that blames Jews for slavery and which arbitrarily establishes one's good or evil nature on the level of one's skin pigmentation.

      As I recall, Obama once attempted to quote MLK, whose idea was that one should be judged on the content of one's character, not on the color of their skin.

      In Obama's world, his skin color is on what he should be judged, and any judgment of the content of his character is automatically deemed "racist".

    1. Allan on Oct 16, 2008 9:32:51 AM:

      ACORN's response to the LV raid:

      Over the past year, ACORN has worked hard to help over 80,000 people in Clark County register to vote.

      Hundreds of canvassers and volunteers have worked for months talking to citizens from Nevada’s most disenfranchised communities and encouraging them to exercise their right to participate in our democracy. Their work has been tireless—they deserve a great deal of credit for spending days in the hot sun at public places from parks to community centers to shopping centers helping citizens complete voter registration applications. Most of the 80,000 registrations they have collected and turned in to election officials come from young people, low income people and minorities—the very people whose voices are too often left out of our electorate.

      As part of our nonpartisan voter registration program, ACORN staff reviews every single application submitted by our canvassers. Special, dedicated staff makes up to three phone calls attempting to reach the voter listed on EVERY SINGLE CARD before they are turned in to verify the information. Our callers verify the information on the cards before turning them in to election officials to make sure that as many new voters as possible get on the rolls and to make sure that all of our voter registration workers are doing the high quality work they are trained to do.

      While the vast majority of our voter registration canvassers do a great job, there have been several times over the past ten months that our Las Vegas Quality Control program has identified a canvasser who appears to have knowingly submitted a fake or duplicate application in order to pad his or her hours.

      Anytime ACORN quality control staff has identified a suspicious application, we have separated that application out and flagged it for election officials. We turn any suspicious applications to election officials separately, along with a cover sheet identifying the nature of the problem and an offer to provide election officials with the information they would need to pursue an investigation or prosecution of the individual. (Note that civic organizations are required by law to turn over ANY signed voter registration applications even when they are known to have problems). We immediately dismiss any employees we suspect of submitting fraudulent registrations.

      It was surprising that law enforcement officials appeared suddenly at our Las Vegas offices Tuesday, because ACORN and its attorneys have already been proactive in providing information about problematic cards and any employee suspected of misconduct. In July, ACORN staff and our attorney set up a meeting with Clark County elections officials and a representative of the Secretary of State’s office to urge them to take action on information ACORN had provided. Since then, and as recently as September 29^th , ACORN has provided officials with copies and—in some cases—second copies of many of the personnel records and the "problem card packages" and cover sheets with which we originally identified the problem cards.

      ACORN is a community organization dedicated to making everyone’s voice count in the vital public policy debates in our country. Helping citizens become active voters is a crucial part of our work to help build a fairer and more inclusive democracy. We will continue with this important work by encouraging every eligible voter to the polls this November.

      Oh, and does any of this sound vaguely familiar to you? It should. Remember the attorneys that the DOJ fired for partisan political reasons? It was because they wouldn't file baseless and unwinnable charges against... ACORN!

      ACORN has just completed the largest, most successful nonpartisan voter registration drive in U.S. history. We helped 1.3 million low-income, minority and young voters across the country register to vote.

      Unfortunately, just as in 2006, that success in bringing people into the democratic process, have been greeted with unfounded accusations to disparage our work and help maintain the status quo of an unbalanced electorate.

      After a similar spate of charges against ACORN in 2006, we learned that then-Attorney General Alberto Gonzales had fired Republican U.S. Attorneys because they refused to prosecute ACORN and other voter assistance groups on trumped up fraud charges. This was the heart of the U.S. Attorney-gate scandal that led Karl Rove, Gonzales and other top Department of Justice officials to resign. Because the press didn’t catch on until long after the election, it was part of a successful strategy to create an unfounded specter of voter fraud and to suppress voting.

      Thanks for bringing that up, WD40. If you believe that America is improved when more of its citizens participate in elections, be sure and visit their website and learn how you can support them.

    1. North Dallas Thirty on Oct 16, 2008 12:20:20 PM:

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